Yesterday was not a good day. The picks broke even for a mediocre day for a (thus far) tepid week. Heh, even Anita Marks is starting to give me golf claps. Things are not helped when there is at least one postponement a night (seven straight days now). Last night, there were three of them. The weather in the north and in the northeast has been nasty. Snow has hit Denver hard. Can we get some warmth already?
And what is a game picker to do when Clayton Kershaw loses twice in a row and the formerly hot Justin Masterson has an extreme BABIP correction? Roll with it. As I replied to Ms. Marks, baseball means that there is always another day.
There are eleven games on the schedule. The Mets are still in Colorado and the Rangers are still in Chicago. Will they play today? Assuming they all do, here are the picks:
- The Brewers over the Giants: Assuming that Yovani Gallardo can catch a cab to the ballpark, he will start at home--where he is usually tough--against Matt Cain. Cain has certainly not looked ace-like so far this season.
- The Mets over the Rockies: Similar situation here. The Mets can now start Jonathon Niese in the game instead of Jeremy Hafner. Not that it will make a difference in Coors Field. This will be high scoring and Niese and John Garland will probably not have much to do with the final outcome.
- The Tigers over the Mariners: Hisashi Iwakuma has become one of my favorite pitchers and picking against him is hard to swallow. But that is how the pick has to be since he is facing Justin Verlander. However, if Iwakuma can match Verlander for goose eggs, I like the Mariners' bullpen better than the Tigers.
- The Yankees over the Diamondbacks: Might as well pick the sweep even if it is Phil Hughes on the mound for the Yankees. Hey, if Ivan Nova can win, so can Hughes. The Yankees' lineup against lefties like Patrick Corbin is pretty bleak though, so do not expect the score to be that high.
- The Braves over the Pirates: Jeff Locke is not A.J. Burnett and in his two starts thus far has more walks allowed than strikeouts. He did win his last start though. Meanwhile, Julio Teheran is once again being bitten by the home run bug after a dominating spring. There is no confidence here for Teheran, but the Braves will score big and often in this game.
- The Red Sox over the Indians: The Red Sox look like the best team in the American League right now and Jon Lester is just one reason why. He is pitching fabulously. Zach McAllister should keep the Indians in the game, but the Indians will not score more than a run or two in this one.
- The Cardinals over the Phillies: The Cardinals are starting to get frustrating again. They look so good in some games and so bad in others. Hard to figure. But Adam Wainwright is pitching really well and combine that with a lack of offense on the Phillies and you should add up to a Cardinal win over Cole Hamels.
- The Bay Rays over the Orioles: I see a big problem thus far with the picks. I have picked seven of the visiting teams to win out of eight contests. That is probably not a good idea. Oh well, I have to go with the match-ups and in this one, David Price is simply a better pick than Miguel Gonzalez. The only caveat is if the Rays can score like they did yesterday.
- The White Sox over the Blue Jays: Again, this is a match-up choice. It just seems that Chris Sale has a better chance of shutting down the Blue Jays than R.A. Dickey has of shutting down the White Sox. The Sox will hit at least two homers.
- The Reds over the Marlins: A battle of young arms in this one. Jose Fernandez has looked great for the Marlins despite never pitching above A-ball before this season. He has not faced a lineup like the Reds before though. The Reds start there own prospect, Tony Cingrani. Cingrani sort of rhymes with Cincinnati, so that is a nice marketing angle. He has fared well so far in relief and his minor league numbers are outstanding. Neither starter will go longer than five innings, so the Reds bullpen wins the game.
And the Game of the Day!
- The Rangers over the Cubs: The postponement yesterday allows the Rangers to move up Alexi Ogando into the game instead of the rookie, Justin Grimm. That makes a big difference and should allow them to beat Carlos Villanueva
Games of the Day: 12-5